SOCHI – A downcast Lewis Hamilton said his victory in Sunday's Russian Grand Prix aided by Mercedes team orders was “the strangest day” of his career.
While title rival Sebastian Vettel of Ferrari said it had been a “no brainer” for Mercedes to order Valtteri Bottas to allow Hamilton to win and increase his championship lead to 50 points, Mercedes were left squirming with embarrassment.
“It's honestly the strangest day I can remember having in the sport in my career,” said Hamilton, the reigning world champion. “I remember we've crossed the situation before and I've always felt super uncomfortable.
“I want to win the right way. As racing drivers, we exist to win. If you tell us we can't win, it's taking our air away, it's taking our life away. It's not how I want to win.
“The team took the decision. There are stronger heads in the team who say we have to win and there are those of us who are racers and emotional about it. It's important to acknowledge Valtteri, who was the absolute gentleman. We have to embrace the moment still, but it’s the win on my list of wins that I'm least proud of.